Epitaph to Mr. Rowe
Epitaphs from The Life Of Pope by Samuel Johnson

Intended for Mr. Rowe, in Westminster Abbey.

Thy reliques, Rowe, to this fair urn we trust,
And sacred, place by Dryden's awful dust;
Beneath a rude and nameless stone he lies,
To which thy tomb shall guide inquiring eyes.
Peace to thy gentle shade, and endless rest!
Blest in thy genius, in thy love too blest!
One grateful women to thy fame supplies
What a whole thankless land to his denies.

Of this inscription the chief fault is that it belongs less to Rowe, for whom it was written, than to Dryden, who was buried near him; and indeed gives very little information concerning either.

To wish peace to thy shade is too mythological to be admitted into a Christian temple: the ancient worship has infected almost all our other compositions, and might therefore be contented to spare our epitaphs. Let fiction, at least, cease with life, and let us be serious over the grave.

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